PASSING OFFENSE: D-minus -- Jimmy Clausen played as well as he had all year in the first half. He was poised and under control and said he hadn't felt that way since playing at Notre Dame. But things fell apart in the second half as the Seahawks brought pressure and Clausen wasn't able to make them pay. Steve Smith was a non-factor in the second half when the Panthers needed him the most. He had three catches for 54 yards in the first half but then none in the second. Brandon LaFell made a couple of nice grabs early to move the chains, but struggled to come up with the ball in the second half. Carolina really needs to think about blowing up this offensive line and starting to rebuild this unit.
RUSHING OFFENSE: B-minus -- Like everything else for the Panthers on Sunday, the running game was a tale of two halves. In the first half, they got good push up front and ran for 95 yards on 21 carries and two touchdowns. However, they could only muster 36 yards on the ground in the second half as things quickly slipped away. The Panthers simply aren't as dominating running the ball as they've been in the past. Jonathan Stewart started over Mike Goodson and ran for 92 yards on 21 carries and a score. Goodson carried just three times in the game, including just once after scoring on a 6-yard touchdown on the game's first possession. He said he injured the AC joint in his shoulder in the second half.
PASS DEFENSE: B -- The Panthers had done a great job of applying pressure to Matt Hasselbeck in the first half, but couldn't touch him in the final 30 minutes. He started to stretch the field with some downfield throws late in the first half and that seemed to loosen up the Panthers' defense. Carolina continues to struggle defending tight ends, a byproduct of their rotating weak-side linebackers this season. Not having Chris Gamble hurt the Panthers defensively, but Hasselbeck's numbers weren't all that impressive as he completed just 17 of 30 passes for 229 yards with two picks.
RUSH DEFENSE: F -- This was a pathetic showing by the Panthers' run defense, particularly in the second half. The Seahawks came into the game ranked 32nd in the league in rushing, averaging just 77.4 yards per game. So what do they do? They ran for 161 yards and three touchdowns. Marshawn Lynch led the way with 83 yards on 21 carries and three touchdowns. Obviously the Panthers were going to make the Seahawks beat them on the ground and they did just that.
SPECIAL TEAMS: F -- The Panthers gave up an 84-yard punt return to Leon Washington and had a 96-yard kickoff return by Mike Goodson called back on not one, but two penalties. That's poor play and it cost the Panthers.
COACHING: F -- Here's the bottom line in this game -- the Seahawks clearly made adjustments on both sides of the ball at halftime and the Panthers didn't make any -- or at least not enough.
Panthers Report Card, Week 13
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